(Since I’m on the 2nd day of my precious procrastinating streak, I’ll just try something different!)
I’ll just write about the books I’ve lost and never found, not even a copy in any bookstores. They’ve just vanished.
Of course, those colorful books from Soviet Raduga publications would be the first on list. Well they have been for a long time. Unless some individuals with really kind heart have unearthed their copies, scanned and uploaded them in a site. Well it’s not technically illegal. Also, they are only in our native language, Bengali. So now I have full access to those portals of childhood.
The current topper of that list is an old fairy tale book my aunt gave me on my 7th birthday. It was called “Thakurmar Jhuli” (Granny’s bag of fairy tales). Supposedly books of that title contains native fairy tales where princes save damsels in distress from evil witches.
BUT THIS ONE WAS DIFFERENT.
It was actually Brother Grim’s fairy tales written in our Bengali cultural background.
Hansel and Gretel became “Hashu and Chhana” – two sibling left in the woods by their family and captured by a witch in gingerbread house (though it wasn’t gingerbread, but a house made of a local dessert called “shondesh”)
Then we had Snow White and Red Rose who became “Borfi and Golapi” – Borfi meant white as snow and Golapi meant pink.
Rapunzel was called “Keshoboti” – the girl with long luscious hair.
The Gingerbread Man was “Pitha Pooli” – one kind of local cake we eat made from flour, oil and sugar.
The esteemed Town musicians of Bremen became “Gobbu gnayer gayok dol” or a band of musicians from the village Gobbu.
But the most favorite of mine was “Kujo ghora” , which was adapted from a Russian tale “The Humpbacked Horse”.
Oh how I wish to get the book in any bookstore around the world! If someone can find it. PLEASE DO LET ME KNOW!